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Author Notes: Maybe you knew these crumbly shortbread cookies as Russian Tea Cakes, or Snowballs, or Viennese Crescents, rather than Mexican Wedding Cookies (or Polvorones, as they're called in Mexico—from the word for dust, polvo). Theories abound on why the same cookie ball appears to have descended from so many places (was it European nuns traveling to Mexico? Or Cold War rebranding?) If you have a hypothesis to add, we want to hear it! (Note, too, that this version has the unusual addition of tequila, which stands in quite nicely for vanilla.) Slightly adapted from Gregg Gillespie's 1001 Cookies (Black Dog & Leventhal, 1995). —Food52
Makes 4 to 5 dozen
cup vegetable shortening (butter can be substituted, or use a mixture)
tablespoons confectioners' sugar
cups all-purpose flour
cup pecans, chopped
Powdered sugar for rolling
- Preheat the oven to 350° F.
- In a large bowl, cream the shortening and confectioners' sugar. Beat in the tequila. Gradually blend in the flour. Fold in the pecans.
- Pinch off walnut-sized pieces of dough and roll into balls. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased baking sheets.
- Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until lightly golden. Roll in powdered sugar while still warm, then transfer to wire racks to cool.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!